Review – Bliss #1 (Image Comics)

Introducing the Perfect Accomplice For Crime in Bliss #1

Bliss #1 is the beginning of an all-new maxiseries from the minds that brought you Coyotes. Sean Lewis (writer) and Caitlin Yarsky (artist) have again told a story of crimes and drugs.

This is the first issue in an eight-issue series revolving around Feral City and the unfortunate inhabitants. It’s already proving to be a dark story, one focused on a drug of the same name (Bliss) and the unusual side effects it has.

Writing

Bliss #1 is every bit as haunting and disturbing as the description makes it sound – and then some. It is a shockingly ethereal tale, as one child tells the story of their father – and his great fall. It’s heartbreaking and beautiful, and yet unafraid to get dark when needed.

Which is most of the time. It frequently feels like half the point of this series is to raise internal debates about the moral dilemmas the characters find themselves in. It’s already proving to be a series that will force the readers to think and analyze their emotions.

The story (so far) takes place in two timelines. The past, which explains all of the events leading up to the present. It makes the situation feel even more complicated than it appeared at first glance. It evokes sympathy and even pity. Yet, it does not provide an easy answer to the problem.

Looking back on this issue, it’s providing a fascinating look at human nature and the depths that one can and will go to – especially when aided by something like Bliss. It’s emotional and tense and content to leave you mulling over the problem for hours.

Art

The artwork that comes with Bliss #1 is unique yet perfect for the story being told. The ethereal introductory sequence demands attention before dropping the reader into a realm that feels much more physical and foreboding.

This series shows the best, and the worst that people have to offer, and thus the artwork responds accordingly. It dances around the graphic nature of events while still leaving readers very clear on what takes place.

This was the right call – there’s no gore to distract from the core of the plot or the debates it brings with it. Despite everything, this issue reads as being overwhelmingly human, from how the characters act to how they’re depicted on the pages.

The colors are heavily influenced by the tone of the scene – and the dominant emotions of the characters. It’s a clever way to influence the readers while not becoming overpowering. This was just one of the many ways in which the visuals increased the impact of this tale.

Conclusion

Bliss #1 didn’t waste any time, instead opting to throw readers straight into one of the biggest moral dilemmas around and doing so in beautiful detail. It’s rich and fascinating, all while being exceptionally dark.

In short, this is a series worth checking out, especially if you want something that will make you want to sit back and think. It’s also potentially a great conversation started, despite the heavier subject matter at hand.

This review was originally written for Word of the Nerd, but has been ported over to Quirky Cat’s Fat Stacks now that the site has shut down.

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